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BelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point Teardown

22 May 2013
The following is an overview of a teardown analysis conducted by IHS Technology Teardown Services.

IHS Insight Perspective

As data traffic on wireless access networks continues to grow at exponential rates, carriers are looking to public Wi-Fi hotspots to offload data traffic from their cellular networks. The Wi-Fi access point from BelAir Networks is deisgned to be a ruggedized device that can exists in harsh external environment, supports high data rates with 802.11n 3x3 MIMO implenetations, and supports DOCSIS 3.0 for seamlessly DOCSIS infrastructure integration.

BelAir Networks is a Canada based vendor in the enterprise and carrier grade Wi-Fi access market. They are acquired by Ericsson in 2012.

BelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point Main ImageBelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point Main Image

Overall Significance

The BelAir 100SNE is a carrier grade outdoor concurrent dual-band (2.4/5GHz) 802.11n 3x3 MIMO wireless access point. According to the company, the device is capable to 'transfer up to 900Mbps per access point. The device also has integrated DOSCIS 3.0 Cable Modem, and GPS for accurate device location.

Design Significance

The design is subdivided into 1 major PCB and 2 modules, a 'Main PCB' which features the logic and control circuitry (Freescale Communication Processor, Qualcomm Atheros WLAN, Ethernet, & GPS IC, etc…), the 'Cable Modem Module' by Hitron Technologies features a TI Cable Modem IC, a Maxlinear Front End IC, & Nanya DDR2 SDRAM, and the 'Power Supply Module' by XP Power which supplys up 55W of Power. This device is designed for harsh outdoor conditions with dust and water proof enclosure. This device is advertised to be able to operate at -40C to 50C.

BelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point - Main PCB TopBelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point - Main PCB Top

Target Market

Wireless Carriers

This device is targeted to wireless service providers wishing to add a primary wireless mobile offer to their service bundle for customer retention, or for wireless operators wishing to offload their existing 2G/3G/4G networks.

Released

N/A

No information is available about the release date of this access point.

BelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point - Main PCB BottomBelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point - Main PCB Bottom

Pricing and Availability

N/A MSRP

Pricing - No pricing information was available for this device.

N. America / Europe

This device is believed to be targeted for North American and European Market.

Volume Estimations

150,000 Annual Units
3 Total Years

For the purposes of this teardown analysis, we have assumed an Annual Production Volume of 150000 units and a Product Lifetime Volume of 3 year(s).

Teardown volume and production assumptions are primarily used for our cost analysis in terms of amortized NRE and tooling costs, especially for custom components specific to the model being analyzed (mechanical components especially). Unless assumed volumes are different by an order of magnitude, minor changes in volume (say 1 million vs. 2) rarely have a large net effect on our final analysis because of this.

BelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point - Disassembly View 1BelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point - Disassembly View 1

Market Performance

Per IHS's IMS Research forecast, 802.11n will remain the dominant technology in 2012 to 2016. Despite shipments of 802.11n increasing over the forecast period, the overall market share of 802.11n is predicted to be eroded by the launch of 802.11ac in 2012.

BelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point Cost AnalysisBelAir 100SNE Wireless Access Point Cost Analysis

Cost Notes

The top cost driver, accounting for roughly 23% of the BOM, are the Die-Cast Enclosure, and Freescale Network Processor.

Total BOM: $246.90
Top Cost Drivers below: $163.14
% of Total BOM 66%

Main Cost Drivers below

Hitron Technologies CDA-20360BEL Cable Modem Module - DOCSIS 3.0- (Qty: 1)
Enclosure, Main, Top / Heatsink - Die-Cast Aluminum, Painted- (Qty: 1)
Freescale Semiconductor P1011NXN2HFB Communications Processor - Single 32-Bit e500 Core, 800MHz, 32KB L1 Cache, 256KB L2 Cache, 3 x 10/100/1000Mbps Ethernet, 2 x PCI Express, USB 2.0 Controller, SPI- (Qty: 1)
Suntak Multilayer PCB 10-Layer - FR4, Lead-Free- (Qty: 1)
XP Power SDS60US05B-XA0100B Power Supply Module - 5.3V, 8.3A, 55W- (Qty: 1)
Qualcomm Atheros AR9390-AL1B WLAN - Single Chip, Dual Band, IEEE802.11a/b/g/n, 2.4/5.0GHz, 3-Stream, PCI Express 1.1 Compliant, MIMO- (Qty: 2)
CTS CER0789A Ceramic Filter - 2.4GHz- (Qty: 3)
Qualcomm Atheros AR8031-AL1B Ethernet Transceiver - Single Port, PHY, 10/100/1000BASE-T, SGMII/RGMII MAC Interface, w/ 100BASE-FX/1000BASE-X Fiber Optic Support- (Qty: 3)
Enclosure, Main, Bottom - Injection Molded Plastic- (Qty: 1)
Antenna PCB Mounting Plate - Stamped / Formed Aluminum, Anodized, w/ 7 Stamped / Formed Aluminum Brackets, 1 Stamped Aluminum Plate, 4 Threaded Metal Studs, 6 Threaded Metal Inserts, 14 Rivets & 6 Metal Straps- (Qty: 1)

Not Included in Analysis

The total materials and manufacturing costs reported in this analysis reflect ONLY the direct materials cost (from component vendors and assorted EMS providers), AND manufacturing with basic test. Not included in this analysis are costs above and beyond the material manufacture of the core device itself - cost of intellectual property, royalties and licensing fees (those not already included into the per component price), software, software loading and test, shipping, logistics marketing and other channel costs including not only EMS provider and the OEM's margin, but that of other resellers. Our cost analysis is meant to focus on those costs incurred in the manufacture of the core device and exceptionally in some circumstances the packaging and literature as well.

We do provide an Excel tab 'Overall Costs' where a user can enter their known pre and post production costs to build a per unit cost reflective of theirs actual expenditures.

Manufacturing Notes

As with most electronic hardware, this equipment may be built for BelAir by an outside contract manufacturer, but may also be built in-house, as is often the case for OEM/ODM type companies which are common in Taiwan. For the purposes of our analysis, our cost structures in manufacturing represent the cost to the manufacturer, without markup. If an EMS is involved, one would have to add a fair margin for the EMS provider, on top of our cost assessment, in order to provide a 'fair price' to the manufacturer. EMS providers often operate in the low single digits on margins, but tend to make up for such low margins when working with low volume products such as this.

Country of Origin

For the purposes of this analysis, we are assuming the following country(ies) of origin for each level of assembly, based on a combination of 'Made In' markings, and/or assumptions based on our knowledge of such equipment.

Box Contents - Mexico
Cable Modem Module - Mexico
Main PCB - Mexico
Misc PCB Assemblies - Mexico
Other - Enclosures / Final Assembly - Mexico
Power Supply Module - Mexico

Country of origin assumptions relate directly to the associated cost of manufacturing, where calculated by iSuppli. In the cases of 'finished' sub-assemblies (such as the Modem and Power Supply Module), we do not calculate internal manufacturing costs, but rather assess the market price of the finished product in which case country of origin assumptions may or may not have a direct effect on pricing.

Labor rates are applied directly only to hand inserted components and systems in our bill of materials, and although regional assumptions do, these new rates do not have a direct effect on our modeled calculations of placement costs for automated SMD assembly lines. "Auto" inserted components (such as SMT components) placement costs are calculated by an iSuppli algorithm which allocates a cost per component based on the size and pincount of the device. This calculation is affected by country or region of origin as well.

Design Complexity

Component counts by assembly and the number of assembly are indicators of design complexity and efficiency.

Component Qty: 1784 - Main PCB
Component Qty: 233 - Other - Enclosures / Final Assembly
Component Qty: 468 - Cable Modem Module
Component Qty: 118 - Power Supply Module
Component Qty: 81 - Misc PCB Assemblies
Component Qty: 14 - Box Contents
Component Qty: 2698 - Grand Total

Component counts have a direct bearing on the overall manufacturing cycle times and costs, and also can increase or decrease overall yields and re-work. Our calculations of manufacturing costs factor counts and more qualitative complexities in the design. This access point has a total component count of roughly 2700 (~35% more components than the Ruckus ZoneFlex 7762 we did around half year ago). This is due to the additonal DOCSIS and GPS functionalities this access point offers.

Note that manual labor has a much smaller effect on auto-insertion assembly lines (for the Main PCB, for example), where manufacturing costs are much more capital equipment intensive and driven by these investment costs.

Design Notes

At its core - the BelAir 100SNE access point is essentially two sets of Qualcomm Atheros Baseband (AR9390) + RF Front End, & Qualcomm Atheros GPS (AR1520A) tied together by a core processor. The processor is a Freescale Network Processor (P1011NXN2HFB) - Single 32-Bit e500 Core, 800MHz, 32KB L1 Cache, 256KB L2 Cache, 3 x 10/100/1000Mbps Ethernet, 2 x PCI Express, USB 2.0 Controller, SPI

The device also contains a Hitron Technologies Cable Modem module which features Texas Instruments (TNETC4830ZDW) Cable Modem IC - DOCSIS 3.0, 8-Channel 320Mbps Downstream, 4-Channel 120Mbps Upstream, and MaxLinear (MXL261) Front End IC - Dual 100MHz Tuners, 8-Channel, DOCSIS 3.0, 4-Channel IF Output, 4 QAM Demodulators, 65nm Process; and a XP Power (SDS60US05B-XA0100B) Power Supply Module - 5.3V, 8.3A, 55W.



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